Solutions

USING DATA PLATFORMS FOR LOCAL DECISION-MAKING

UNDP’s fourth learning event to share SDG solutions proposed by local governments was held on the 5th of October 2023 with an exchange between Prague in the Czech Republic, and Amman in Jordan on the topic ‘How to use data platforms for better local decision making’.

Cities have been experimenting with data platforms for a while now. Technology evolves quickly, but local governments are also adapting quickly to new tools and possibilities to improve service delivery. By now, most of the world’s bigger cities have developed some type of data strategy to collect information about how their citizens behave, move, need, and request in terms of city services. Investing in data platforms is sometimes difficult to justify, it is a long-term strategy for a city administration and also requires breaking silos and force different city departments to share information. It can also contribute to induce difficult changes, even sometimes changes that can go in the wrong direction.

Amman and Prague have established data platforms to inform their decision-making, improve their governance systems and service delivery to the communities for the sustainability and inclusiveness of their respective cities cities.     

The Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) is developing an online participatory platform with interactive maps developed by GAM that allows residents to navigate the city, especially during crises.  

You can download Amman project presentation here              

The City of Prague is experimenting a data platform called “Golemio” that is mainly an open-source solution providing business intelligence to decision-makers as well as to other city-owned companies on a Business to Business model of collaboration with performance-based Service level agreements (SLAs). In numbers, the platform currently hosts over 120 active dashboards and is powered by a team of around 25 data scientists.

Download Prague presentation here

Both local governments are actively contributing to Agenda 2030 by experimenting digitalization that improve transparency, accountability, and access to public services, contributing to the development of strong, effective, and accountable institutions at the local government level, thus fostering sustainable development of municipalities, which align with the following Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Amman wants to optimize critical services during times of crisis while Prague data platform contributes to build, analyze and interpret communities

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LESSONS LEARNT

DATA-DRIVEN DECISION MAKING IS EFFECTIVE AND EFFICIENT

Data platforms equip local governments with the means to collect, analyze, and interpret data.

Informed decisions rooted in data are more likely to yield effectiveness and efficiency, thereby diminishing the potential for mismanagement and corruption.

These platforms enable local governments to render data and information regarding their activities, financial matters, and decision-making processes accessible to the public. This transparency fosters accountability, as citizens, civil society organizations, and other stakeholders can oversee and scrutinize governmental actions.

Furthermore, data platforms assist local governments in the more equitable and efficient allocation of resources, consequently reducing the risk of favoritism or discriminatory practices. Moreover, by offering clear and transparent data, these platforms fortify accountability mechanisms, including audits, oversight bodies, and the media.

DATA PLATFORMS CAN FACILITATE CITIZEN ANGAGEMENT

Data platforms have the potential to facilitate citizen engagement by providing channels for feedback, participation, and collaboration.

They also empower local governments to engage in long-term planning, safeguarding infrastructure development and public services from being compromised for short-term political gains.

This fosters a sense of ownership and oversight among the public, thereby making it more challenging for local officials to partake in corrupt practices.

Moreover, through streamlined data and information sharing, local governments can reduce bureaucratic obstacles, ultimately minimizing opportunities for corruption and bribery. It’s worth noting that data platforms play a crucial role in enabling local governments to prioritize long-term planning, ensuring that infrastructure development and public services remain resilient in the face of short-term political considerations.

If you missed the event, you can watch the full webinar here (French and Spanish versions also available) in our YouTube Channel